NCC warns against unauthorized sales and use of GSM or phone boosters in Nigeria. The commission says signal boosting without approval is illegal.
The Nigerian Communications Commission, (NCC), has given a two-week ultimatum to people involved in the sale, installation, and use of the GSM boosting device, to forthwith desist from such act.
NCC News on GSM/Phone boosters
The NCC on its webpage particularly warned banks and other financial institutions, government agencies, telecommunications service providers, private/public companies, and owners/occupiers of residential premises, that the sale, installation, and usage of GSM boosters is illegal.
“In view of the above, the Commission hereby gives a 14-day PRE-ENFORCEMENT NOTICE effective from the date of this publication to any person involved in the sale, installation and use of the device, to forthwith desist from such act,” the notice warned.
Phone boosters, also known as GSM boosters, help cell phone users improve coverage in areas where there is not a good signal.
They are placed in homes or cars to increase the signal strength for cell phones, this allows users to complete calls in areas where they couldn’t previously.
The devices can help wireless service providers, public safety first responders, and consumers by extending cell phone coverage to areas including tunnels, subways, building interiors, and rural areas.
Although it helps boost the performance of phones, it can interfere with wireless networks that are improperly installed or poorly designed. This could cause interference to other calls, including emergency and 911 calls.
NCC said, “in the exercise of its mandate of ensuring the protection of consumers, ensuring good quality of service and maintenance of technical standards of maintenance equipment, and in accordance with the provisions of section 131 (1) of the Nigerian Communications Act (NCA) 2003, the Commission hereby warns the general public that it is a criminal offense to sell, install or use any equipment which may hinder network operations, or which has not been type-approved by the Commission.”
It said such acts may lead to monetary sanction and/or imprisonment, or both (fine and imprisonment) as well as the confiscation of any equipment used in the illegal enhancement of network coverage.
What is a GSM booster?
A GSM Booster or network Booster is a device that is meant to amplify the network strength of a particular network. Just like its name, it boosts the network signal you are sending and receiving. This means it’s meant to increase browsing speed, download speed, upload speed, etc.
GSM/Phone boosters in Nigeria
In Nigeria, due to the poor signal from network providers like Glo, MTN, Airtel, 9Mobile, etc, some have adopted the habit of using GSM signal boosters to enhance 4G/3G/2G GSM network signals.
GSM boosters can be found on some online stores and marketplaces, but with the ban in place, buying or selling of any unauthorized GSM booster is NOT RECOMMENDED.